It’s early in the morning, but heavy bass is booming across a sunny street corner near Chesterfield Square Park in South Central, Los Angeles. The filming of the video for Mike Jones’ “My 64″ is underway. An orange candy-painted Impala courtesy of the Majestics Car Club bounces wildly and Jones begins rapping: “First I lean wid it then I rock wid it/ I got a candy apple drop with a glock in it!”
Eric “Lil’ E” Wright, the spitting image of his legendary father, rolls around the set on a lowrider bicycle, sun glinting off his enormous Prince Of Compton medallion. As director John “Dr. Teeth” Tucker repositions his camera, Jones takes a moment to explain why he chose to film the video in Los Angeles.
“I got love for L.A. because L.A. showed me the most love with Who Is Mike Jones?,” explains the affable Houstonite. “They bought the most records. So I thought, ‘How can I do a song and still show where I’m from but show love for the West Coast?’ So I put the 84s on the 64, and that showed Houston and Cali coming together. We got Snoop Dogg on this track, he gave us that vouch, because I had to get somebody that’s from here that knows about the 64 better than us.”
Produced by Salih Williams (“Back Then,” “Still Tippin’”), “My 64″ sports a chorus that samples Eazy E’s classic “Boyz In Tha Hood.” As Mike explains to XXLMag.com, “I told Salih that L.A. was the market that showed me the most love. Next thing, he told me, ‘I made something for ya! This gonna be one where we put “Still Tippin’” in a chokehold!’ See, I’m a fan of Eazy-E, N.W.A, Dre, Cube, all them. So it just went perfectly. What I loved about Eazy was he ain’t have to be all flashy, he just be regular. He showed you could have fans that could get with you and be loyal without you having to have all the bling on all the time. That’s why even on my set in this scene I’m all regular, not crazy iced out.”
The song also features verses from Snoop Dogg and Bun B, both of whom appeared later in the day in a secret warehouse in downtown L.A. to film their parts. (Footage of that sequence is viewable at www.myspace.com/mikejones). “I want people to know we’re showing love with the 64, love for Los Angeles,” Mike says. “And the swangers from Texas, we here too.” “My 64″ is the second single from Mike Jones’ The American Dream album, due July 10.